Kishore The Multifaceted Maverick
Whoever said eccentricity , thy name is Kishore Kumar, was indeed very true. And some of them also believe that he was not only a hard core but also a thick skinned eccentric. Two of the examples nee real life life incidents will prove the point aptly. It was the recording for Heeralal Pannalal in [...]
Whoever said eccentricity , thy name is Kishore Kumar, was indeed very true. And some of them also believe that he was not only a hard core but also a thick skinned eccentric. Two of the examples nee real life life incidents will prove the point aptly.
It was the recording for Heeralal Pannalal in Mehboob Studio with Kishoreda and Asha Bhonsle as the main lead singers along with one male and a female chorus singer. It was commonly believed that Kishoreda played truant only when the producer fails to make the payment in advance. But in the above mentioned case the payment had been made as signalled by his secretary by a wink and their silently expressed code word. And the music director was the late Panchamda, Kishore’s favorite. Yet, he lost his mood in spite of rehearsing the song for hours together, which he rarely did, came out of the recording room with the ear phone intact on his head, went to the loo, climbed out of the window through a make shift staircase and the car was ready below at the backside wall of the Studio, to make his escape easy. And it took the producer months before he could record the song. The second one was not only an incident but as routine exercised by him time and again which simply consisted of the following.
For example, any guest who came was welcomed at the gates of his Gauri kunj bungalow in Juhu, but if he has come to recover his dues , all hell would break loose and his dogs would be unleashed on him. Some of his victims also included the media scribes and even some of the producers whose face he did not like.
And not to speak of the other known eccentricities like the board he had hung out side his huge palatial mansion at Juhu saying ‘ This is a lunatic asylum” with a small warning sign below “ Enter at the risk of your own life”. Or the way he used to have long conversations with the trees at the back yard addressing each one of them with a special name.
Kishore Kumar, a bundle of boundless energies , was also a man of many faces, dimensions, voices, and in fact a man with multi- faceted talents rolled up in one bundle under his belt right up his sleeve. A man of brains but not brawns, his talent as well known include acting, singing, directing, producing , song writing, editing, music directing so on and so forth. Thank God for small mercies, his one man show did not make him one man audience of his own masterpieces. At the moustachioed agde of 18 , this young lad Abhas Kumar Ganguly alias Kishore Kumar landed up in Bollywood from Khandwa and made his humble beginning as a singer. So what, if he did not even have an iota of knowledge of the basics of music. But then he was destiuned to be what he was. Merits or demerits ignored or overlooked and since his brother Dad muni already held way in tinsel town, Kishoreda did find his golden opportunity and sang his first song “, Marne ki duaee kyon maangoo’ for Dev Anand in Ziddi which was released a year after the Indian Independence. Besides he also started doing small roles and finally played the lead in Andolan.
In between the phases of acting and singing Kishore “Kumar tied the first nuptial knot with Ruma Devi, had his son Amit and finally it resulted in not only a split in his family but the marriage too ended up on a tragic note. Ultimately , it was S.D.Burman who resurrected his career and also made him forget the woes of his personal life by making him sing that memorable song “ kasoor aapka” in the hit film Bahaar.
And then there was no looking back from giving playback in the Vyjayantimala starrer New Delhi in which he became her hero and also in Ladki. From then on his popularity soar ib leaps and bounds only because of his uninhibited comic anticsand spontaneous jocunditry followed by several such films like Ladka Ladki, with Mumtaz and Half Ticket with Madhubala to name justa few.
Fate definitely takes its own course as very soon this powerhouse of talent became so busy that the late Mohammed Rafi had to give the playback for him in Ragini and Shararat , that too with a meaningful song in the latter film “ Ajeeb dastaan teri yeh zindagi”. How apt!
It seems that Madhubala was one of the main causes in the Kishore – Rumadevi marriage when Kishore and Madhubala made great folis for each other’s foibles, as Kishore had selected Madhubala for his home production Jhumroo, which he not only produced but also acted in, directed, composed music and even wrote his lyrics for the first time. So what, if like his first marriage, it turned out to be a turnic at the turnstiles. But as fate once again prevailed , his marriage to the beautiful but doomed Madhubala did not klast long. Yet Kishore did not stop it at that. He zipped through a short lived marriage with Yogita Bali and finally for the fourth time, he tied the knot with Leena Chandavarkar , who was only two years elder to his son Amit. Thankfully this marriage was up for the keeps and he also had his second son Sumeet.
But it goes without saying that till the mid eighties he retained his position at the top , nudging aside all competition and his voice pulsed with verve and exuberance at his many stage shows. Yet, even an unconventional man like him had to follow the diktat and convention of death. Amen!